Tuesday January 08, 2008
This recipe was sent to Seduction Meals
by Deniz of New York City. It is cherished family favorite.
Circassian Chicken is a classic Turkish dish typically served cold as an appetizer, or meze (pronounced MEZZ-eh). It consists of chicken in a thick walnut sauce and is the type of recipe that only gets better with time, allowing all the flavors to seep into each other.
You can prepare this dish one or two days before serving your Seduction Meal. Store covered in the refrigerator until ready to serve; remove 1 hour before serving to bring to room temperature. circassion chicken
4 boneless chicken breasts
1 medium whole potato, peeled
1 small onion
1 small carrot, peeled
1 1/2 tsp salt
4 cups of waterwalnut sauce
1 1/2 cups of ground walnuts
2 slices of stale white bread
2 tsp red pepper
2 cloves of garlic
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup chicken stockgarnish
Red Pepper or Paprika
(optional) walnut halves
Wash the chicken and place in a large saucepan with four cups of water and the peeled potato, onion and carrot. Bring to boil and skim as needed. When the chicken is half cooked add the salt. Cover and continue to cook over moderate heat until the chicken is tender. If necessary add more hot water and continue cooking until tender. Remove the chicken and strain off the stock. Shred the chicken in small pieces.
Grind the walnuts finely or pound to a paste in a mortar. Place in a mixing bowl. Soak the stale bread (with crusts removed) in some of the chicken stock, then squeeze and crumble into the walnuts. Mix together well until smooth. Add the red pepper, crushed pepper and salt, and kneed well again. Place in a piece of muslin and screw tightly until the oil from the walnuts seeps out into a small bowl.
Place the mixture in a bowl, and beat in 1 cup of warm chicken stock, one tablespoon at a time until it is thick. Mix the pieces of chicken with a few tablespoons of the walnut mixture and spread in a serving dish. Spread the remaining walnut mixture over the chicken, smoothing down with the back of a spoon. Pour the walnut oil over the dish. Cover and refrigerate. Just before serving sprinkle with red pepper or paprika.
Serve with a mix of other mezes such as fried aubergines and peppers with tomato sauce or serve with rice pilaf for a more hearty main dish. The recipe above can be found in the cookbook: Timeless Tastes
, Turkish Culinary Culture
If you are looking for a good Turkish cookbook with a bit of history on Turkish cuisine, then try Timeless Tastes: Turkish Culinary Culture.
by Semahat Arsel. The book is published in Istanbul and a bit difficult to find in most bookstores, although you can easily purchase this online. I was told this is a wonderful cookbook for traditional Turkish recipes. Filled with historical essays and great recipes, this is a must have for your cookbook collection.
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Monday October 22, 2007
Another great flea market cookbook find: Recipes: The Cooking of India
by Time Life Books which you can find at Amazon.com. While perusing the book I landed on the page for this recipe and happily paid my two dollars. Three hours later I am in the kitchen surrounded by the wonderful aroma of curry. This dish makes a wonderful appetizer or served as a main course over rice pilaf. The recipe below serves 6 to 8. Accompanied by wine or beer, this is surely a savory Seduction Meal.Meatballs
26 whole blanched almonds
1 tsp saffron threads
1 tbsp boiling water
2 pounds ground lamb (you can use a mix of lamb, beef or pork)
1/3 cup of chick pea flour
1 cup finely chopped onions
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 tbsp finely grated fresh ginger
2 tbsp garam marsala
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
2 tsp salt
3 tbsp cold water
vegetable oil for deep fryingPreparing the meatballs
Place the almonds in a bowl of water, add enough cold water to cover them by 1 inch and soak for at least 4 hours
Drop the saffron into a small bowl, pour in 1 tbsp of boiling water and soak for 10 minutes. Meanwhile in a deep bowl combine ground meat, egg, 1/4 cup of flour, onions, cilantro, ginger, garam masala, cayenne pepper and salt.
Knead the mixture vigorously with your hands. Pour the saffron and its soaking liquid over the meat and stir together thoroughly.
Shape the Koftas, or meatballs, in the following fashion: Divide the mixture into 26 portions and pat each one in a slightly flattened round. Drain the almonds and place one in the center of each of the flattened patties. Shape the beef around the nut into a ball, enclosing the almond completely.
Make a thick, smooth batter with 4 tbsp of the flour and 3 tbsp of cold water. Mix together well. With your fingers or a pastry brush, spread the batter evenly on all sides of the meatballs. Arrange the Kofti/meatballs side by side on a sheet of wax paper.
Pour two cups of vegetable oil (oil should be about 2-3 inches deep)
into a large frying pan or wok. I used two pans to keep things moving
and used 2 cups of oil in each. Heat the oil until it is very hot,
lower heat to medium high. Place meatballs in batches of 7 or 8,
deep-fry the koftas in the oil, turning them about with a slotted spoon
for 3-4 minutes, or until they are richly brown on all sides. As they
brown transfer them to paper towels to drain.Next: Preparing the Curry Sauce
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Tuesday September 04, 2007
This is a variation on the famous Turkish dish, Imam Bayildi which literally means "The Iman Fainted". They say a certain Imam who tasted this dish after observing a holy day and ending a long fast was so taken with the aroma of this dish, he actually fainted. May you be so lucky to witness this same reaction!
The original dish does not include the lamb, so feel free to remove this ingredient and skip the first 5 ingredients and step 1. Either way, its delicious! This is a stove top dish that I consider easy to prepare, although there is a bit of preparation. This can be served as a main dish or as a side dish.
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Posted by terry dagrosa at 09:00AM on September 04 in International: Turkish
, main dish: lamb
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